Roberts Wastewater Treatment Plant Facts and HistoryWhile it does a great job with treated water quality, Village leadership completely ignores the effects the plant has on water levels in Twin Lakes
Excerpt from the January, 2018 Village board meeting. Roberts Village President Willard Moeri discusses water utility rate increases that will be affecting residents in the coming year.
(1 minute, 15 seconds)
“…We know it’s coming, and it’ll be coming within 2019”
FACT: The Roberts Water Treatment Plant has been slowly raising lake levels for decades.
In 1995, the DNR published a detailed analysis of the impact of the Village of Roberts Water Treatment Plant on Twin Lakes. At that time, it found that the plant was contributing 4.8” annually to the lake levels, and recommended a comprehensive monitoring protocol which was never implemented by the Village of Roberts.
FACT: The DNR has been well aware of the issue for many years
In subsequent years, the DNR has published numerous statements expressing concern for the impact that the Roberts Wastewater Treatment Plant has on the slowly expanding lakes.
FACT: Actual history matches the DNR findings
Application of a comprehensive USGS Study shows that since 1990, the amount of water discharged by the Roberts Water Treatment Plant has raised the level of Twin Lakes by an average of 4.73” per year, causing the lakes to reach a critical flood stage in 2015. Actual historic data proves the DNR findings were accurate in 1995, and that lake levels will continue to rise until an alternate wastewater discharge plan is implemented.
FACT: The DNR is mandating reduced phosphorus
The DNR is requiring that the Water Treatment Plant reduce its emission of phosphorus by more than 90%, and that it must reach that goal by January 01, 2021. To meet this requirement, the Village will need to spend $2-$3 Million on updates to the Water Treatment Plant.
FACT: Village of Roberts water utility rates are going to skyrocket
To cover the costs of the Treatment Plant updates, the Village of Roberts will need to significantly increase water utility rates on residents and businesses. An increase of approx. $30 per quarter for an average residential customer is projected by Village leadership.
FACT: Treatment Plant updates will do nothing to address rising lake levels
The updates to the Treatment Plant will do nothing to address the incremental rise in lake levels, which will accelerate along with the growth of the Village of Roberts. Twin Lakes will continue to expand, further damaging the environment around them, and continuing to destroy property and endanger the health and safety of residents of the Town of Warren who live around the lakes.
FACT: The Village will have to spend millions more in the future
The Village of Roberts will eventually be forced to spend millions of additional dollars to address the flooding, and create an alternate wastewater discharge plan, which will likely render the investment in the Treatment Plant updates irrelevant.
FACT: Residents will pay all the additional costs
Village residents will be burdened all of the additional costs, which would have been lessened had an alternate plan been developed earlier.
Push back against the DNR on the compliance timeline, and work with other communities and the County to take a more regional approach to wastewater treatment.
The true, long term solution to support continued growth in Roberts / Warren, as well as other communities along the I-94 corridor, is to create a multi-municipality centralized treatment system. Hudson is in the planing phases of a major new treatment plant construction, and would welcome collaboration with other communities to create a wider sewerage district in the County.
Larger projects are better suited to qualify for State and Federal grant funding, and more customers of a larger, central treatment plant means lower overall costs for everyone.